A NEWPORT man who assaulted a Jobcentre security guard after his benefits were stopped has been given a suspended prison sentence.

Michael Gay, 35, of Walsall Street, Newport, admitted assaulting security guard David Vaughan and police community support officer (PCSO) Bryan Flynn when he appeared before Cwmbran Magistrates Court on Friday.

Mark Salter, prosecuting, said that on May 13, Gay went to the Jobcentre on Charles Street in Newport because his benefits had stopped and started to vent his anger at staff.

"He became quite aggressive and refused to leave," said Mr Salter.

Staff called security and a guard named David Vaughan approached the defendant who then claimed Mr Vaughan had touched him.

He punched Mr Vaughan in the face causing him to fall face-first to the floor and his eye began bleeding, later needing two stitches.

Two police officers then arrived and Gay refused to give them his details before grabbing PCSO Bryan Flynn and pushing him over.

More police officers arrived and he was arrested, claiming self defence in interview.

District judge David Parsons asked probation to prepare a report on Gay which showed he had depression and anxiety.

Gareth Williams, mitigating, said Gay had not received his benefits for eight weeks and despite promises that someone would come to his residence to check that he was not living with an alleged partner, no one came.

"By this time he was very stressed and lashed out," said Mr Williams.

Judge Parsons said abusing and assaulting Jobcentre stuff is "particularly serious" and sentenced Gay to 12 weeks imprisonment, suspended for 12 months due to his mental health.

He must complete 100 hours' unpaid work, pay £200 compensation and pay an £80 victim surcharge.